A cultural journey of tastes

by Jemma on April 5, 2011

in EATS!, Recipes

My week got off to a great start with 20 minutes of yoga for runners.  I love doing this download the day after a long run as it’s stretches out all of the muscles that have become tight.  Afterward I made yoghurt bowl for breakfast topping it with Dorset Cereals simply tasty muesli, raspberries, blueberries, strawberries and blackberries with a little Sweet Freedom sweetener.

Rather than using my normal choice of yoghurt I picked up some Kefir in Asda last week and decided to use that instead.

Kefir is a fermented milk drink discovered in the Caucasus Mountains centuries ago.  It has many health benefits, such as  antifungal and pre-biotic properties.  It also contains many vitamins, minerals, amino acids and enzymes, specifically calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, B2 and B12, vitamin K, vitamin A and vitamin D. Kefir grains ferment cows, goats and sheep milk but also soya, rice and coconut milk too.  Perfect for those following a vegetarian or vegan diet.

For lunch I made another delicious Buddha Bowl consisting of mixed leaves, bulgar wheat, cannellini beans, mango and melon.

I topped this with Laura’s dressing that involves mixing tahini, sweet white miso and water.  This dressing is so simple but so tasty!

Lunch was followed by a banana, apple and a plum.  Later in the afternoon I ate my pre-workout snack which was a Seeded Stack bar and an orange.  When I made it home I did my usual toning workout.  I decided do the repetitions much more slowly than usual rather than trying to speed through them.  Well, this really woke my muscles up and I am feeling it today too.

Yoga + toning exercises = serious DOMS! :D

For dinner I stuffed two portabello mushrooms with a Lemon Herby Bean and Millet Burger olives and sundried tomatoes and served them with steamed kale in soy sauce and omega mixed seeds and parsnip chips.

After yesterdays post dessert had to be bar of Rawr Cashew Power and a pink lady apple.

This mornings breakfast was a-maz-ing! I made a Cookie Dough Chia Seed Pudding.


  • 2 tbsp of chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp of peanut flour (I used PB2)
  • 3 tbsp of wheat germ
  • 3 tbsp of oats
  • 2 cups of vanilla rice milk
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 tsp of sweet freedom sweetener

Mix all the ingredients together and allow to soak overnight in the fridge or at room temperature.  Of course play around with the quantities of the ingredients and super food add-ins like maca powder, mesquite etc. and protein powders.  I found that this recipe produce a wonderfully light and creamy pudding.

Don’t forget the toppings…

…and additional toppings!:)

I’m loving experimenting with chia seeds at the moment.  They taste so good!  There was one point last night where I was actually standing and cheering the seeds on to swell up.

Yes I’m crazy, it’s already a given!

Lunch was just a repeat of Mondays Buddha Bowl followed by a chopped persimmon and kiwi.  I waited for them to ripen and go a little bit soft.  They tasted perfect and were really sweet.  This was my first time trying persimmon and I loved them.  They will definitely be making a regular appearance in my shopping trolley!

My pre-workout snack was a slice of ginger bread and two oranges.  Whilst at the gym I did my usual 1 hour interval training on the treadmill, cross trainer, step machine and bike followed by some ab work.

For dinner tonight I had my Spinach Dhal with toasted pita bread and steamed broccoli florets.

Before this I hadn’t really ha a proper dhal dish.  The Spinach Dhal was delicious and I love the mild spices.  It contains a little chilli, but for flavour and not for heat.  I do like hot and spicy food, however sometimes I find that too much chilli can overpower the rest of the flavours in a dish-well not here my friends!


  • 2 cups of red lentils
  • 1 clove of garlic (optional)
  • 1 onion diced (optional)
  • 1 tsp of cumin
  • 1/2 tsp of mild chilli powder
  • 1 tsp of turmeric
  • 1 tsp of ground coriander
  • 1 tsp of crushed yellow mustard seeds
  • 2 cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • vegetable stock to cover
  • seasonings
  • handfuls of spinach

First soften the onion in a little oil of your choice (I use canola oil).  Once the onion has softened add the garlic and cook out for a few minutes.  Next add the ground spices to the pan and cook for a minute or so until aromatic.  Add the lentils, bay leaves and cloves to the saucepan and cover with the vegetable stock.  Cook the lentils on a steady simmer, until they are cooked all the way through and become creamy.  Stir in the spinach and allow it to wilt in the heat of the lentils.

You really don’t have to add the onion and garlic.  I did as I think its a nice way to cook out the spices.  If you decide not to include the onion and garlic in your dhal then simply begin with the stock and lentils and add all of the spices at once.

This would be great as an accompliment to a curry dish, rice, vegetables or even on its own.

Enjoy! :D

Look what I found lurking behind a plant pot in my garden:

The wonderful and lovely Lucinda, who I met at the Vitality Show, has sent me a range of Munchy Seeds which includes:

  • Vanilla Pumpkin
  • Choccy Munchy Seeds
  • Pumpkin Mix
  • Omega Sprinkle
  • Chilli Mix
  • Crunchy Bites

I also received some of the pour out packs too…

I can’t wait to try all of these seeds!!! :D

The past few days have been full of new foods.  I love trying and experiencing new foods, especially form different cultures.

Have you tried anything culturally different recently food wise? The kefir, persimmon fruit and dhal are all new to me.  I really enjoyed all of them and the fact that all three originate from different parts of the world.

Have you tried Kefir before?  What did you think? I really liked it as a lighter option to regular yoghurt, but found it a little bland without the addition of the sweetener, muesli and fruit.

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{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

This Italian Family April 5, 2011 at 9:09 PM

Ooh so many pretty fruits. Makes me smile and think of summer!

I’ve never tried Kefir, but seeing as how my tummy doesn’t like dairy all that much, I’m think it’s probably not for me, haha. Glad you enjoyed it, though!


Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 6, 2011 at 11:01 AM

Lots of bright coloured fruits make me think of summer too. One of my favourite times of year.


movesnmunchies April 5, 2011 at 9:16 PM

omg i wnt your chia pudding and your dhal STAT!!! ive never tried kefir- but probs wont since its dairy! i love cultural foods!


Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 6, 2011 at 11:00 AM

The chia pudding is lovely and creamy. I’m loving chia puddings at the mo!


Nicky@discoandlove April 5, 2011 at 9:20 PM

Yaaay so glad you liked the persimmon!! <3 I also had a spinach dhal tonight using almost exactly the same recipe! You must have good taste hehe :)
I've never tried kefir before because it just never interested me to try it to be honest!
I've been trying alsorts of new things recently – as seen on my blog :)
I am SO making your buddha bowl tomorrow – I love the idea of using melon and mango in it! I never use fruit in savoury meals but it sounds delicious!!


Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 6, 2011 at 10:59 AM

The persimmons are lovely and sweet. You wouldn’t think that from looking at them. I imagined them to be bitter and apple like in texture. How wrong was I?


laura@keepinghealthygettingstylish April 5, 2011 at 9:29 PM

I’ve never tried kefir before – sounds really interesting! I know its not the same but I’m looking forward to trying some kombucha when I’m in NYC. Glad you liked the dressing its so awesome! I’ll be eating it on everything. The persimmons are lush too, I picked up more reduced ones so they are lovely and sweet :-)


Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 6, 2011 at 10:58 AM

Kombucha sounds amazing and can be used for so many different things. Your dressing is delicious and definitely a favourite now! :D


AlisonM April 5, 2011 at 9:54 PM

Dhal used to be a go-to for me for a long time, but somewhere along the way I stopped making it — thanks for the reminder, I think it’ll be making a reappearance now!

And I loved kefir before I gave up dairy. Such a great taste


Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 6, 2011 at 10:56 AM

I quite like kefir, but it wil never beat Greek yoghurt or organic natural yoghurt for me. Dhal is so lovely. I will definitely be making more of it in the future.


Sarah(everydaysapicnic) April 5, 2011 at 10:01 PM

I love trying different things. The kefir sounds interesting – I’d love to try it, but it probably won’t outdo my beloved natural yoghurt.


Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 6, 2011 at 10:34 AM

No natural yoghurt is so much better, but it was nice to try kefir!


Ma Ma Megan April 5, 2011 at 10:21 PM

I neeeed to try a persimmon fruit!


Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 6, 2011 at 10:34 AM

You should- they are seriously good!


Kate (What Kate is Cooking) April 5, 2011 at 10:26 PM

Thanks for the dal recipe :) I will be making it ASAP!


Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 6, 2011 at 10:33 AM

Your welcome! :D


Sophia @ Raven Waves April 5, 2011 at 10:40 PM

I’ve been loving yoga lately too. It’s just doing wonders for my muscles! Your berry breakfast looks delish!


Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 6, 2011 at 10:33 AM

Yoga is great for stretching out those muscles. I really want to fit more of it in to my routine.


Kimberley April 5, 2011 at 11:35 PM

I would like to try Keifer — Im all about trying new foods lately apparently :)


Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 6, 2011 at 10:33 AM

I love trying new foods too-it can make meals so much more exciting!


laura @ box run eat April 6, 2011 at 11:36 AM

That dhal looks lovely, I haven’t made dhal for ages, I should do, I want some now!


The Teenage Taste April 6, 2011 at 12:03 PM

That cookie dough chia pudding sounds fabulous! I always watch the chia seeds swell up – It’s so fun! Haha.
Have a great day! :-)


leashieloo April 6, 2011 at 1:52 PM

In Korea they had a kefir/yogurt like drink geared at children that I really enjoyed. Twenty-something or not, I could go for some of it right now!


Flo (Coconut Chronicles) April 6, 2011 at 3:30 PM

How lucky are you to receive all those seeds?! I LOVE the vanilla pumpkin flavour but have yet to try the rest… I can’t wait to see what you think of them!
Everything looks sooo good as usual, especially that dhal. I’m a sucker for Indian flavours :-D


stuffedsillysarah April 6, 2011 at 7:44 PM

oooh – I love dahl… will try out your recipe one day and let you know how I get on : ) plus never thought of putting mango and melon on a grain salad – interesting! x x


Alissa @ Not Just Apples April 6, 2011 at 10:09 PM

Your breakfast looks delicious! How have I still not tried using chia seeds? I’m definitely going to have to write that in larger letters on my to-do list :)


Jenny April 6, 2011 at 11:05 PM

So many great eats! I’m going through a chia addiction myself, I cannot get enough! I made some overnight oats last night and I’m still amazed at how much liquid the seeds soak up :) I’ve never seen that brand of Munchy Seeds before, definitely intrigued :)


thequirkykitchen April 7, 2011 at 12:32 AM

Hello pretty lady! Out of all the food on all the blogs, I always wanna eat yours the most! Super healthy and super yummy looking! I’m totally gonna try your chia seed breakfast – looks amazingly tasty! p.s – where do you get your PB flour from?
Yeah I tried kefir a couple of years ago – I really liked it!


moveovercelery April 7, 2011 at 2:29 AM

I love kefir! It’s a treat because it’s pretty expensive. I love the yogurt-like consistency it has. I love it in overnight oats and smoothies! The health benefits are stellar!


mindrunningwild April 7, 2011 at 2:22 PM

Kefir is awesome! I’ve never thought to have it on cereal though- although I’ve had cereal with both milk and yogurt. This would be an inbetween!


Cara @ EAT.PRAY.RUN. April 7, 2011 at 4:16 PM

I’m out of town the next few days but your Dhal looks SO good…putting that on the menu for next week!
I’ve recently been doing lots of shopping in the ‘Asia inspired’ isle of my local natural foods store. Soba, seaweed, miso….i’m on a kick. Grabbed some spring roll wraps the other day i’m excited to put to use :)


~Jessica~ April 7, 2011 at 6:30 PM

I don’t think any of my foods tend to stem from a culture as such ~ my IBS can’t handle spices so most things tend to be Italian or Chinese-inspired I suppose.

Never tried kefir, but would love the coconut version I am sure. I’d rather have your chia seed pudding though!



Lana April 7, 2011 at 6:50 PM

All of your eats look so yummy that I don’t know where to start (:
Haven’t tried kefir…yet! I actually just got some of the grains to make my own water kefir…should be interesting!


Suzanne Holt December 29, 2013 at 9:46 PM

The cookie-dough chia seed pudding looks good– but I’ve heard that sometimes chia seeds can make things have a weird texture. I still want to try it though, anything with cookie dough is amazing!
Suzanne Holt recently posted…Say Goodbye to Dry Skin with Norwex’s Luxurious Skincare Products!My Profile


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